Martin J. Hillenbrand Oral History Collection

Dublin Core


United States--Officials and employees
Foreign service
Politics and Public Policy


This collection consists of interviews conducted by John Stark, Gary Bertsch, and Mary McKay with Dr. Martin J. Hillenbrand, for Stark's internship with the Center for International Trade and Security (CITS) in 2004. The Russell Library hired Stark in May 2004 to transcribe the interviews, and he continued to conduct interviews with Dr. Hillenbrand through July of that year. The last interview Stark did with Hillenbrand was video recorded, with Gary Bertsch acting as co-interviewer. In September 2004 Mary McKay of the Russell Library interviewed Dr. Hillenbrand regarding his collection of photographs. Topics include the Berlin Crisis, European Union and its future, Hillenbrand's experience in Burma and India, origins of the Center for East-West Trade Policy (currently the CITS), meeting and marrying his wife, Hillenbrand's monograph Power and Morals, and international economics post-World War II.

Biographical information:

At the time of these interviews, John Stark was a senior at the University of Georgia, majoring in German. He graduated in 2004, after he completed his internship with the Center for International Trade and Security.

Dr. Gary Bertsch is the co-founder and Director of the Center for International Trade and Security, and the University Professor of Public and International Affairs at the University of Georgia.

Dr. Martin Joseph Hillenbrand served thirty-five years as a professional United States Foreign Service Officer. He began in 1939 as vice consul in Zurich, and became Embassy First Secretary in 1952. In 1956, Hillenbrand served as an American political adviser in Berlin. Later he was appointed as the first U.S. Ambassador to Hungary (1967-1969) and Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs (1969-1972). Hillenbrand concluded his diplomatic career serving as Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany from 1972 until his retirement in 1976.
After retiring, Hillenbrand worked from 1977 until 1982 as the Director General of the Atlantic Institute for International Affairs in Paris. In September 1982, he became the first Dean Rusk Professor of International Relations at The University of Georgia. He also served as the Director of the Center for Global Policy Studies and Co-Director of the Center for East-West Trade Policy (Center for International Trade and Security) at the University. Upon retirement from the University of Georgia in 1997, Hillenbrand completed his memoirs, and authored, co-authored, and edited four books and more than twenty-five chapters and articles.
Hillenbrand was married to Faith Stuart (1917-2004). The couple had three children: David, John, and Ruth. The Hillenbrands resided in Athens, Georgia until Martin Hillenbrand's death in 2005 at the age of 89.


Martin J. Hillenbrand, 1915-2005


Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies






United States

Interviews in this Collection:


Dr. Martin Hillenbrand interviewed by John Stark. Hillenbrand discusses the European Union, the economic impacts of European colonialism, and post-World War II Europe. He talks about Winston Churchill, his impact on Great Britain, and his speeches.…


Dr. Martin Hillenbrand interviewed by John Stark. Hillenbrand discusses the rebuilding of Germany, post-WWII, and the move towards German unification, including the differences between West German Chancellors Willy Brandt and Konrad Adenauer, the…


Dr. Martin J. Hillenbrand interviewed by John Stark. Hillenbrand discusses his involvement with the Center for East-West Trade at UGA, including the origins of the center and Hillenbrand and Bertsch's motivations for founding the center, the focus on…


Dr. Martin J. Hillenbrand interviewed by John Stark. Hillenbrand discusses Eastern Europe and Russia, and the influence of Russian culture on Eastern European countries, the transition from imperial Russia to Soviet Russia in the early twentieth…


European Union Expansion, Part 2.


April 6: Morals; background on Power and Morals. April 17: Morality in the modern world. Dr. Hillenbrand's experience with morality and power as a diplomat: Burma stay, running amuck, non-violence practitioners in India.


Dr. Hillenbrand's childhood.


Dr. Hillenbrand's childhood.


Dr. Hillenbrand's experience in Burma; the courtship of his wife, Faith.


Side A: Wedding in Rangoon, 1941; Faith's odyssey to reunite with Dr. Hillenbrand. in Mozambique. Side B: Courtship of Faith, discussions between Faith and Dr. Hillenbrand; her evacuation from Rangoon.


Side A: Escape from Rangoon; living in Calcutta; maintaining liaison to the Burmese government while in exile. Side B: Ph.D. research in India (non-violence philosophy); stay in Calcutta/Bombay; Indian desk assignment in D.C.


Side A: Return to U.S. after service in Asia; Indian desk assignment in D.C. Side B: Work in Mozambique, 1940.


Path to Economic War: Side A: post WWII background of upcoming economic war, plans for Germany, competing interests among occupying powers, international law. Side B: dynamics of Soviet leadership, relations between US and USSR, classical musicians,…


Topics include trade war between U.S. and European Union.


Topics include impending economic war between the U.S. and Europe, and Switzerland (Zurich).

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